When People Don’t Take You Seriously
Ever fear that your age, gender, background, or position in the company may be influencing the perception others have of you? If you feel like what you say or do isn’t carrying the weight you’d like it to, consider these ways to boost your image:
Evaluate your wardrobe.
If you would fit in with a group headed to a frat party, if your outfits scream “soccer mom,” or if you look like you’re on your way to Bingo with fellow seniors, it might be time to update your closet. Looking professional will help others see you that way as well as increase your confidence.
You don’t have to be a CNN junkie, but basic knowledge about events going on in the world will enable you to contribute intelligently to conversations. Likewise, keep up on what is going on in your organization and industry.
Speak like a professional.
Swearing, using slang, and littering sentences with interrupters such as “um” and “like” can detract from what you are actually saying. Talk clearly in full sentences using correct grammar. Look people in the eye, and put the cell phone away. Beware of gossiping and overly dramatic responses, both of which can come off as immature. Remember people’s names and integrate them into the conversation.
Put a premium on manners.
Hold the door for others. Don’t chew gum during meetings. Keep your cell phone ringer low. Don’t interrupt. Say “please” and “thank you.” While these things sound simple, a surprising number of people fail to do them.
Do your job.
Perhaps the best way for any employee to be taken seriously is to do a good job. Consistently producing quality work is bound to get people’s attention and make others glad to have such a dedicated professional aboard.